trip reports

November 29, 2019

Cape Horn hike

Cape Horn is located on the Columbia River in Washington, near the town of Washougal. The full loop hike is open from July 16 to January 31 each year. The upper section is open all year, but the lower section is closed from February to July 15 for peregrine falcon habitat.

7.4 miles with 1,230 ft gain
Oregon Hikers hike description

We did this loop hike on a cold and windy day, starting on the upper section to the Nancy Russell overlook for a quick lunch. The rock walls provided a nice windbreak. We continued to the lower section, crossing under Highway 14 via a tunnel. The trail switchbacks down quite a few times, with numerous side trails to viewpoints. Every one is worth a visit! The trail is a bit rough in places, and it’s exposed with cliff-side drop offs in a few places. We crossed a large talus slope and continued to the last segment of trail before it reaches a road. The last 1.5 miles are on a road and then there’s a short side trail that leads to another tunnel under Highway 14 and back to the trailhead.

Cape Horn loop hike

on the upper section

Cape Horn loop hike

view to the north of Silver Star Mountain

Cape Horn loop hike

the Columbia River from the first viewpoint

Cape Horn loop hike

one of many viewpoints

Cape Horn loop hike

this tree has fallen over but the roots are still connected

Cape Horn loop hike

tunnel view

Cape Horn loop hike

large meadow the trail crosses through

Cape Horn loop hike

Nancy Russell overlook

Cape Horn loop hike

ferns on a tree

Cape Horn loop hike

tunnel under Highway 14

Cape Horn loop hike

using the Peakfinder app to ID nearby peaks

Cape Horn loop hike

one of the lower viewpoints

Cape Horn loop hike

Cigar Rock

crossing a talus slope

Cape Horn loop hike

bridge under Cape Horn Falls

Cape Horn Falls was more of a trickle than a waterfall on this day

view of the river through the trees

rocky basalt structure

looking up at Highway 14

trail sign

 

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